International Law and International OrganizationsReference:
To the question of setting the limits of continental shelf in Antarctic: status of the states and practice of the Commission on the Limits of Continental Shelf
Abstract.Antarctic is a region with the distinct legal regime. A number of countries claim the territorial sovereignty in Antarctic that also suggests the rights to continental shelf; however, these pretenses have been “frozen” within the framework of the Antarctic Treaty of 1959, which denies any grounds for claiming or maintaining pretenses for territorial sovereignty in Antarctic. The new pretenses or expansion of the existing ones are not declared. According to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982), the countries that intended to set the limits of the shelf beyond 200 miles, must submit a request to the Commission on the Limits of Continental Shelf to receive recommendations. The subject of this research is whether or not the regulations of the Treaty of 1959 will impede the submission of requests to the Commission regarding the Antarctic shelf, considering such requests by the Commission, as well as the possible legal consequences. The states claiming sovereignty in Antarctic adhere to several basic strategies that ensure their geopolitical interests, but do not violate the Treaty of 1959. At the same time, from the author’s perspective, the consideration of such request by the Commission will contradicts the international legal regime of Antarctic and the internal documents of the Commission. Therefore, it is currently impossible to set the “external limits of continental shelf of the littoral stat” according to the Article 79 of the Convention of 1982 in Antarctic. The balance of rights and obligations, in accordance of the Antarctic Treaty, should not and cannot be affected by the activity of the Commission in any case.
Keywords: treaty interpretation, the legal regime of the continental shelf, maritime delimitation, law of the sea, maritime boundaries, delineation of the continental shelf, the limits of the continental shelf, continental shel, the Antarctic treaty, antarctic continental shelf
Article was received:03-08-2018
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